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Good, reasonably priced Bay Area IT Schools?
July 24, 2011 12:13 PM   Subscribe

SF Bay Area: Please recommend a school (vocational, community college, extension university, etc) for someone (age 27) to begin training for a second career in IT.

What is a good place to begin IT training in the Bay Area for someone starting it as a second career, factoring in cost and quality? I've come across classes offered by community colleges, vocational schools like DeVry, and university extension programs.
Also, do you have to know what you want to specialize in before IT training (e.g. Database admin, sysadmin, network specialist) or are there classes where you can get an overview to see which aspect you'd want to focus on?
This is also for a person who does not have a 4-year college degree, and needs certifications to get an IT job.

Thanks for your help!
posted by KimikoPi to Education (7 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Do you have any technical skills at all? If so, get yourself to the nearest startup that needs a mildly-skilled temp. Do some work. Jump up to the next one that is a better fit for what you want to learn. Repeat until successful.

If you happen to live in the city, hand out with tech-oriented artists and help them out with their stuff. Some of them will turn out to be senior people at interesting companies and will help you get work.

There might be good schools to learn tech basics, but the SF Bay economy is highly focused on startups. People that can pick the new hotness up on their own are valued far above people with a technical certificate.

Talk to people. Try stuff out. Buy books. Do what excites you. Have fun.
posted by b1tr0t at 2:30 PM on July 24, 2011


There's ITT Tech, but I can't vouch for quality vs cost...

Personally, i'd recommend going to a community college to do some general ed while exploring the tech field. Getting an AA degree then transfering to a state school to get a 4 year degree is probably most cost effective and will yield a higher paying job.

There's also the internship/company training program route, especially in silicon valley.
posted by guster4lovers at 2:31 PM on July 24, 2011


DeVry is really expensive--most trade schools are. I used to work with a woman who got her accounting AA there which cost as much as my 4 year BA at a CSU. On top of that, the only university that would honor her classes was USF, so when she was ready for a BS, she had to pay top dollar for it. Anecdata, she said she started in their IT program, but said she didn't learn much, so transferred.

I'd go the community college route myself.
posted by smirkette at 3:05 PM on July 24, 2011


Is staying in the Bay area a non-negotiable requirement?
posted by jayder at 3:13 PM on July 24, 2011


Check out Foothill College. It's got some very good programs. However, it might be completely full of students.
posted by parmanparman at 6:36 PM on July 24, 2011


DeAnza is widely considered to be one of the top five community colleges in the state.
posted by samthemander at 7:40 PM on July 24, 2011


Why do you want to go into IT?
posted by parrot_person at 3:15 AM on July 25, 2011


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